Medea Quotes – Top Quotes From Medea

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Passion quotes by Medea:
nurse sees media’s anger growing
“its clear this anger will grow; soon enough her grief like a gathering cloud will be kindled by it and Burt into a storm”
Medea cries
“oh I’m wretched, pity me for my sufferings! oh if only i could die”
Jason asks Medea why she doesn’t give up her anger:
“you cant even now abandon the anger that sears your heart” Jason to medea
the chorus, medea’s emotions are greater than her love for her children crushing any remorse or mercy she has.
“why do you surrender to this anger that crushes your heart, why this lust for blood?”
Nurse describes: medea’s passion
“savage temperaments of hers”
“unforgiving nature”
“glaring at them like a bull, as if she wanted to do something awful”
“anger of hers won’t die down until someones felt the force of her thunderbolt”
Fixated and devoted passion is a curse depicted through the choruses plea to Aphrodite that conjures “insatiable strife”
“oh never my lady, may you fire at me… the unerring arrow you have poisoned with desire”- chorus
“may she rather show respect for marriages where peace reigns and judge with a shrewd eye the loves of women”
“may i know the blessing of a heart that is not passion slave”
Medea has to let go of her motherly instincts but they are so deeply rooted into her it becomes a fighting battle of humane nature and such lust for revenge.
“Ah stop my heart, do not do this deed! Let them be, poor fool, spare your children! When they are living with us they will bring joy”
“I cannot look at your anymore my sorrows overwhelm me”
metaphors of medias emotions:
a rock or a wave of the sea
like a bull
a lioness
With a nature more savage than a tuscan scylla
Cancer spreads
like a bull
Jasons emotion:
subverted meads on lines into Jason’s
“in heavens name let me touch my children soft skin”
“ah pity me, i long to clap them, to kiss the dear lips of my children”
jasons reason
“it seems i must prove myself capable speaker indeed, my last, like a helmsman, i must trim the edges of my sail to run before the tempest of your noisy protestations”
jason blames medea for her own exile
“your surely behaviour has led you to exile. it is not my fault that you are now without a home. i will do what i can to help you and the boys”
his calm manner speaking with casue-effect statements explain logically why she should be banished:
“as…., but…. this is why…. none the less…”
Jason’s assertion:
“i have shown wisdom, and prudence… ad acted as a friend to you and my children”
jason employ’s reason over passion in choosing
“no womans charms are the cause of this royal match i have made”
When medea is enticing jason by falsely giving up her anger he in reply congratulates her on adopting the “superior way of thinking”
Medea’s reason:
“my passion is master of my reason”
medeas decisions appears to be influenced by her emotions of rage and vengeance:
“i will kill my own children, no-one shall take them from me”
Medea knows her children will not be treated with the respect or care Jason so naively thinks.
“i will not leave my children to the mockery of my enemies”
once Jason anger has simmered, he will be able to see this distort in full picture and come to a realisation that it was he who was the catalyst for his own children death.
“You do not know lamination yet wait until you are old”
the chorus approve medea’s seekage for justice and shame jason
“it is just you should take revenge upon your husband”-the chorus
“you are behaving unjustly” chorus to Jason
media’s injustice
“all i have done for you yet you betrayed me you unfeeling monster”
“gone is the trust placed in oaths”
“your lack of principle”
chorus- justice
“zeus will aid you in seeing just done”
“where he should be shoving love he’s proving traitor”
“she has felt the sting of injustice?”
The chorus see the murder of the princess and the king as justice for medea;
“this day it seems heaven has rained many blows justly on the head of jason”
Injustice/ betrayal:
“where he should be showing love he’s proving traitor”- nurse
“for there is no justice in the eyes of men”
“jason you set out your arguments skilfully and plausibly”
“you have betrayed your wife and are behaving unjustly”- chorus
Medea has Been “driven without rights into exile”- the chorus
Medeas justice:
“so call me a lioness, yes, if you wish to, for i have claws in your heart as you deserve”
“the spirit of vengeance for your crimes has Been sent by the gods to punish me”
:medea’s emotions are greater than her love for her children crushing any remorse or mercy she has. so she may love her children but the poisonous lust for revenge begins to grind her compassion and love, dimming her maternal bond to her children.
At the end Jason says; “the pain is yours to feel as well; you share in this suffering. And Medea replies; “my pain is cancelled now that any mockery of yours is silenced” leaving an ambiguous idea of whether medea truly loved her children or cared for them as much as she alluded to. However
medea’s lust for revenge overrides her passion
“why do you surrender to this anger that crushes your heart, why this lust for blood?”- the chorus
medea’s revenge
and stubbornness
“wreak havoc”
“to suffer mockery of my enemies i will not tolerate”-stuborness
“Let no one think me a weak and feeble woman”
revenge cause a own betrayal on the maternal bond and a great sacrifice of your won happiness and sanity is revealed in order to break the soul of another accumulates anger and necessity for revenge
“to cause you pain”-out of spite
“but to kill your very own children, will you have the heart for that lady?”
“yes by doing that i shall hurt my husband most”
“but know woman would no greater misery”
“aslong as he suffers greater misery”
“yes in doing this i shall hurt my husband the most”
she is willing to suffer such misery in oder to go through with her revenge
“I shall endure a life that brings me pain and sorrow”

the gods:

Symbolic purpose:
a force beyond human comprehension

-men are not the rulers and must too be punished for their defiance over oaths

“what god, what spirt will listen to you, the breaker of oaths, the deceiver of hosts?”
“gods accomplish beyond mans hopes”
“what men expect does not happen; for the unexpected heaven finds a way”
the chorus call upon the gods
“look upon that deadly woman before she lays her hands upon her children, slaying her own flesh and blood!, for they are yours… it is a fearful thing that human hands should spill the blood of a god.”
womens role: dehumanizination of women

“what keeps a a marriage intact more than anything, when a husband can count on complete support from his wife”

“she seeks to please her husband in all she does”

“husbands plaything”

medeas empowerment:
medea’s protest is in the setting of outside rather than the expected private setting in order to enhance her rebuttal of being labeled a helpless woman and instead an empowered women who is discarding unjust social normalities.

“we women are the most miserable of specimens”

“no more shall we women endure the burden of ill-repute”- their low esteem by the public

“we” “our bodies” “us” “we’d be better off dead” – inclusive language in order to depict medias suffering as the suffering of a whole gender who should share her betrayal, share her misery and thus share her lust for revenge.

“it is just that you should take revenge upon your husband”

medea’s transition from pity to revenge

“wrong a women in love and nothing on this earth has a heart more murderous”

“its death I want- ambiguous, suicidal? or vengeance? when did it transition?

mens depiction of medea:
“your sullen looks”
“angry feelings against your husband”
“i fear you”
“hot tempered”
“your skill with words”
“foolish woman, and rid me of your troubles”-a woman troubles are insignificant
creon’s physical man handling of Medea and her foreignness worries him
“feel rough hands of my servants as they bundle you out”-women are weak and easily disposed
“you are hatching some evil plan”- in medias nature
he values rational and logical thinking. sees medea’s cries as a minor annoyance/female facade. However the tutor in this case is being naive blinded by his male prejudice that underestimates the power of a wronged woman

she still continues with her laments

“is he so different from the rest of man kind”

how stupid of her

whilst the nurses able to sympathise with her, she fears for medea and what medea is capable of, considering medias anger to be cancerous. her foreshadowing reveals an understanding of the situation at hand which reverses the gender roles.

how naive you are! the sorrows just begging

a good slaves heart shares the pain

I’ve a terrible fear in my heart that uvula come to some harm

Chorus – are a symbol of moderation but are all female and can sympathise and empathise with Medea, in this case the chorus are being logical:
“Her sorrow of hers sweeps on violently”
“jason you set out your arguments skilfully and plausibly”
“you have betrayed your wife and are behaving unjustly”
“oh never my lady, may you fire at me… the unerring arrow you have poisoned with desire”
“may she rather show respect for marriages where peace reigns and judge with a shrewd eye the loves of women”
“may i know the blessing of a heart that is not passion slave”
The chorus even show more intelligence and understanding of such complex circumstances then jason who ’embodies’ reason in every decision he makes;
you poor fool, bridegroom of sorrow, making marriages with royalty, all-knowingly you are bringing destruction on your children lives and a hateful death on your wife. Wretched man, you are indeed deceived in your destiny”
Yet they cannot comprehend the terrible deed of murdering ones own children;
“by every means, in every way we beg you not to murder your children!”
Mens ownership:
“the scene is set before the house of Jason”
“jasons children”- tutor
jasons speech:
“the fact is that you women…. take all that is good and beautiful in life and turn into the grounds for bitter hatred”
The fact- shows his Mel arrogance and logic of a man-implying that the facts and logic men cohere by are only such claims that in fact false or fictionalisedGood and beautiful in life-the beauty of women (aswell as all their other expected qualities) is destroyed by their internal ugliness that is almost like a poisonous heart. Also could be interpreted that women take relationships, family, stability and the oikos and Destroy what is good resulting in bitter hatred between the two parties. their hatred is not reasoned, only a symptom of jealousy and being woman that is a force that disrupts the stability of society.Jason hatred perhaps is seemed from the fact that men in society can function quite efficiently by themselves, allowing themselves to feel superior and powerful, boarding the line of a god status that the in-superiors should look up to. But they cannot fully treat women a way they so much want to because they need women for the most crucial part of society; reproduction. This resistance women bring to men achieving full control anger them and thus spurs on their dehumanising and disrespectful behaviour towards women in order to reinforce that they still are the superior species.”there should have been some other means for mankind to reproduce itself, without the need for a female sex; this would rip the world of all its troubles”- here, Jason creates division between the two genders swell as a symbol of what restricts men from reaching full control and power over society.
Jason even belittles his new wife;
“yes, that I’ll do; I expect I’ll win her round all right, if she’s a woman like all the rest”
creon fear of Medea and his male prejudice
i fear you
foolish woman
rid me of my troubles
bundle you out
in contrast Aegeus who is from “progressive” Athens comforts and supports medea
Medea i wish you joy
what is troubling your heart?
can he dared to have done something so shameful?
Good ridiance.. you have my sympathy
“(Medea has a) shrewd mind”-he is complementary of medias intelligence, not fearful
Medea even uses Jason’s sexist prejudice to manipulate him, when she is trying to get Jason on side with her she say;
“but we are what nature made us, I will not say creatures of wickedness, but women”
“What a perverse creature I am!”
“A woman is a soft creature made of weeping”
Medea uses her femininity to manipulate creon, reversing the stereotypes of gender
“sinking to her knees and seizing croon by the hand”
“show them some pity, you are also a father”
Creon revelas his weakness to medea:
“only my children win more love from me than my country”—— creon’s love for his daughter replaces his duty as the king and he too shreaks ; “oh, if only I could share your death, my child!”
Creon humours her with one day;
his pride blinds him from what was most sensible because he doesn’t want to be seen in the light of a
“I’m no tyrant”

medea’s hesitation-motherhood and the chorus disgust:

Medea is initially repulsed by her own vicious thoughts and she expresses her love towards her children like any other mother does through the tenderness of her words:

” Ah, stop, my heart, do not do this deed!”
“oh how id love to hug them, the softness of their skin, the sweetness of their breath, my darling ones”
“my sorrows overwhelm me”
The chorus don’t even shame medea for murdering the royals commenting;
“this day it seems heaven has rained many blows justly on the head of jason”
But when Medea makes her final decision her words in contrast are violent and abrupt symbolising her muderous heart that is more powerful than the maternal bond
“i will kill the children”
“spill their blood”
“come my heart, put on your armour?”- however she knows she too will be a casualty in her fallicide
the chorus (and modern day society) on the other hand disagree and believe nothing is more sacred then the bond between a mother and her children and to break that bond is an abomination

“wretched woman, so you are made of rock and iron”

Medea likened to a rock:
Initially in the prologues the nurse connects medea to a “rock or a wave of the sea”, capturing medea passiveness and her just existing-not functioning. the second time she is compared to a rock the chorus give her a portrayal as a coldhearted monster that is a cause of violence, reversing the role of medea and thus the role a female has the capability to transform into to.

“why do you surrender to this anger that crushes your heart, why this lust for blood?”- the chorus

views and values
of gender roles
Views and values:
Euripides clearly portrays feminine gender roles, especially marriage, in a sympathetic manner. he recognises that i can be limiting, oppressive and hypocritical burden to endure for women in societyEuripides bemoans the extent to which women are forced by society to place such considerable parts of their identity into something that can be wilfully trashed by men without consequenceIt is hypocritical for men to control to dominate the moral views and values of others when they’re incapable of maintaining these standards themselves.
Stabilised marriage= the devotion of a wife
Medea “seeks to please her husband in all she does. that is what keeps a marriage together more than anything, when a husband can count on complete support from his wife”
the nurses high modality as indicated by her declaration that medea ** emphasises her utter devotion to Jason. here, Euripides intensifies the obedience a wife must have in ancient greek society and further project the imbalance of power between man and wife that could potentially evoke women to destabilise the Oikos.
Nurses statement :

“Better to have formed the habit of living on equal terms with your neighbours. Certainly what i want for myself is to grow old in secure and modest circumstances. for moderation in the first place sounds more attractive on the tongue and in practise is by far best for a man.”

Secure and modest- multiplications of safety and an implied message of living by moderation will avoid troublesome.

attractive on the tongue: moderation is a quality men desired to be seen with and it is a good quality to posses however living a equal and modest life is never enough for those who greed; men.

by far best for a man- living by moderation will allow a more fair society and constrain men from becoming overbearing and arrogant such as thinking they are the most powerful force in society (almost god like) that could bring strife from the gods. Whilst men consider to be on equal footing with each other, they believe they have achieved sophrosyne. However women of all of Greece are belittled and are forced to be devoted to pleasing their husbands, pampering them with their wants and needs, thus distorting the idealistic proportionate and modest society as it is only a facade and quite contradictory.

The nuse criticises those with :

“royal blood have frightening natures”, here Euripides depicts that those who carry themselves above all society to posses arrogance and will inevitably fall to a troublesome fate whilst those who live by moderation will remain safe and stabilised.

Even the messenger comments; “I would not hesitate to say that those who pass for thinkers on this earth, for men of subtle reasoning, are guilty of being the greatest fools”- life in moderation and limited pride and reason is best

Medea creates disorder when she commits fallicide
Jason cries:
“oh this agony”
Medea enhances his suffering with words:
“you do not know lamentation yet, wait until you are old”
Euripides postulates that once Jason anger diminishes into grief and sorrow, perhaps he will reflect upon what has happened and he can dissect his own faults and realise what cost the lives of his children was his unjustly behaviour, he sent himself to his own doom.
The chorus final words:
“gods accomplish beyond mens hopes. what men expect does not happen’ for the unexpected, heaven finds away”
The gods bring disorder upon Jason as he defied moderation, discarding his oaths, loyalty and placing himself superior to others. the idealistic society Jason so greatly adored and relied on has turned its back on him.
Men may think they control society, the in superior gender, rules, what oaths can be valued and what oaths can be neglected but the gods find a way to corrupt those customs destabilising the society athenian men so heavily worshipped.
When glauce is murdered by medea’s poised finery the palace:

“echoed to the sound of constant running”

“Terrible cry of pain”

medeas babaric/foriegn nature
the nurse;
“she hates her children and takes no pleasure in seeing them. my fear is she may hatch some unheard of scheme. she is no ordinary woman; no one making an enemy of her will win easy victory”
Hatch- she is so barbaric her twisted schemes come naturalthe qualities that make idea a barbarian in this society is her passionate rage upon those who she should tries and care for. her manipulative mind, her twisted scheming that would be so foreign in this society. her savageness and strength that is so foreign for a woman to posses.
the nurses language is fearful and foreshadowing as she can sense medea’s nature manipulating all that are too ‘civilised’ to foresee her plans.
medea’s view of civilisation
to be denied ones native land is a misery beyond all others
Jason’s view of civilisation

in the first place, instead of an uncivilised country, your dwelling is now the land of greece, where you have come to know justice and the use of law, instead of being subjected to force

medeas perception of being civilised is living where you were born where you are native too. that is how civilisation is granted. However Jason raises his own society on such a higher footing, he sees any other land being barbaric and entering his own advanced society would be a blessing.

Medea feels held hostage in a society that only shames her and degrades her giving her no rights, freedom or even the respect of a upholding an oath.

Jasons pride for his civilisation that grants men the benefits of democracy blinds him of seeing the fatal flaws of his society; inequality, lack of sophrosyne and their obsession of superiority over other lands.

causing the greeks themselves to be barbarians:
Their lack of equality; using their women as possessions “playthings”
their selective values of oaths neglecting the ones that are not in favour of their way of life, thus disrespecting the gods.
their coldness and lack of compassion relating in a lack of humanity towards othersmedeas likening to her oppressed homesickness to a “misery beyond all other” intensifies her victimisation at the hands of an ignorant society. the noun “misery” underscores her despair, evoking an image of utter degradation and oppression, which challenges the idea that greek society was blessed with pride, justice and an idealistic perception of living. here Euripides intends to disrupt the image of ‘civilisation’ and instead question how pride of athenian citizens have clouded their fatal flaws that specifically detriment the wellbeing of women.
the chorus perspective
“but i grieve now your anguish, pitiful mother of sons, who will shed your children’s blood to avenge your bridal bed, forsaken lawlessly by your husband so that he might have another to share his house and bed”
Jasons just gives up his marriage for his own prosperity, disposing medea like she was nothing but a obstacle in his way. Jason’s crimes are possibly worsened by his neglecting of medea, as he doesn’t acknowledges he truth of his wrong doing, as society aligns with his actions with no law preventing him from doing so. the chorus feels that medea was driven to her actions by Jason’s ‘lawless’ behaviour.
Jason comments on his foolishness for associating himself with a barbarian

“what a fool i was before, when i brought you from that house of yours in a barbarous land to a home in greece, a deadly passenger who had betrayed your father and the country that reared you. the spirit of vengeance of your crimes has been sent by the gods to punish me”

Jason emphasises the evil, barbarian qualities in medea; however, Euripides explores how it is in fact her dispossession in a ‘civilized’ land that leads her to violence.’

Medea is labelled a barbarian
“wicked mother”
jason points out how her actions would never result from a civilised woman
“not a women in greece today would have dared such a thing”
Medea is seen at the end of the play in goddess form by stage direction unveiling her true power and how above civilisations she is
Medea suddenly appears above the stage in a chariot drawn by dragons. Visible also to the audience are corps’s of her children
the function of the chorus help establish the morals of the play
The use of figurative language (similes, metaphors) in writing
Dramatic irony (when the audiences sees whats really happening but the characters do not)
description of medea:

compelling, rigid, dishonoured

medea gradually turns herself from a victim to a victor.
the play refuses to present her as a monster because if it did, the audience would distance themselves from her

medea extra quotes
“I am well aware how terrible a crime I am about to commit, but my passion is the master of my reason.”
description of jason
ambitious, self absorbed, impious- not showing respect for god
once a legendary hero, jason stinks to human proportions when his own decisions lead to his ruin.
the chorus
ordinary/non herioc, ambivalent, complicit
although initial urging medea to trust the wisdom of zeus, their empathy for the unjust treatment of women leads to their complicity
the nurse
moral, humble and clear-sighted
sees events and characters clearly and acts as the audiences initial guide to the play.the nurse is loyal to the Okies of jason and medea, but this stands only while there is no dispute between the husband and wife expresses a desire for a simple life of humble equality
cynical, callous, subordinate
believing self-intreat will always triumph, the tutor has little hope or belief that people will ever learn from their errors
tutor quotes
“is he so different from the rest of mankind?”
“no one loves his neighbour more than himself”
royal, generous, moral
aegeus is an aspirational figure for the athenian audience;
he expresses the great value of children and demonstrates respect and compassion towards the female foreigner, medea.
aegeus quotes
“aegeus, tou have a noble heart”- chorus
royal, authoritarian
transitioning from an exiling ruler to loving, self- sacrificing father, croon is humanised by Euripides
creon quotes
“only my children win more love from me than my country”
the messenger describes his death:”he tore the withered flesh from his own bones”
poignant, defenceless
id we learn the lessons associated with their destruction, they protect other children from destruction.
“we need your help”


Euripides’ Medea – Plot Summary

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